Chittenden, Russell H.

Chittenden, Russell H. (Henry)

(1856–1943) biochemist, educator; born in New Haven, Conn. As a senior at Yale (1874), he created the first American course in physiological chemistry (later known as biochemistry). He remained at Yale until 1922, bringing Yale's Sheffield Scientific School into prominence as its director (1898–1922), while concurrently lecturing at Columbia University (1898–1903). He made pioneering studies in the enzymatic digestion of proteins and starch, and isolated glycogen ("animal starch") in 1875. He began his advocacy of a low-protein diet for humans in 1907 and investigated the toxicology of human alcohol and chemical addiction (1903–15). After his retirement, he concentrated on writing histories of both biochemistry and the Sheffield School.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.